Marvin Gaye’s “Inner City Blues1” words are as true in 2016 as it was in 1971. The fight just to reap the full benefits of being a citizen is still raging. While there have been many gains over the years, the rise of slogans such as “Take back our Country,” is troubling. The efforts to limit the voting rights of African-Americans appears to be increasing. The double standard of some groups expressing their views by taking over U.S. Government property2 and the how black groups are treated concerning.
The household income of African-American families is significantly worse than the average United States median household income. The median household of the African-American household was $35,3983 in 2014 according to the “Income and Poverty in the U.S. Report” by the Census. The average median income of U.S. households in 2014 was $53,657. Jay Harold has a post, “Black Household Income below National Average,” that discusses this topic in more detail.
Even more depressing is looking at Figure 14 of the same 2014 Census data. Figure 1 shows the Real Median Household Income by Race and Hispanic Origin: 1967 to 2014 of U.S. Households. Looks like the median income of Black Households increased about $10,000 in 47 years!
African-Americans have every right to be depressed. The election of a new president in 2016 adds, even more, anxiety. President Obama is viewed as a protector of Civil Rights for Minorities5.
What Is Depression?
MedlinePlus states that Depression6 is a disorder of the brain. There are a variety of causes, including genetic, environmental, psychological, and biochemical factors. Depression usually starts between the ages of 15 and 30 and is much more common in women.
The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) says that many people with a depressive illness never seek treatment. But the majority, even those with the most severe depression, can get better with treatment. Medications, psychotherapies, and other methods can effectively treat people with depression.
There are different types of depressive disorders.
Major depression,—severe symptoms that interfere with your ability to work, sleep, study, eat, and enjoy life. An episode can occur only once in a person’s lifetime, but more often, a person has several episodes.
Persistent depressive disorder—depressed mood that lasts for at least 2 years. A person diagnosed with persistent depressive disorder may have episodes of major depression along with periods of less severe symptoms, but symptoms must last for 2 years.
Jay Harold knows that it can be difficult for African-Americans to seek treatment for mental illness. Mental health is sometimes a forbidden subject in African American communities and among those of African heritage7. It’s important to recognize the signs and symptoms of depression. You can then help the person seek professional assistance.
Signs and Symptoms of Depression8
- Persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” feelings
- Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism
- Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness
- Irritability, restlessness
- Loss of interest in activities or hobbies once pleasurable, including sex
- Fatigue and decreased energy
- Difficulty concentrating, remembering details, and making decisions
- Insomnia, early-morning wakefulness, or excessive sleeping
- Overeating, or appetite loss
- Thoughts of suicide, suicide attempts
- Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems that do not ease even with treatment.
Depression is a treatable disease! The sooner the initial treatment begins, the more benefits the patient receives. Jay Harold has a link to get free Health and Wealth information to improve your life. Mental health resources are included in this information.
A quote from Pastor Joel Osteen summarizes Jay Harold’s thoughts. “You’re going to go through tough times – that’s life. But I say, ‘Nothing happens to you, it happens for you.” See the positive in negative events.
Take a car ride through recent Civil Rights History with the “Slow Roll Through Civil Rights” on the Jay Harold website. Enjoyed this post? Share it and read more here.
- https://www.census.gov/content/dam/Census/library/publications/2015/demo/p60-252.pdf Table 1, Page 6
- https://www.census.gov/content/dam/Census/library/publications/2015/demo/p60-252.pdf Page 5